The Haunting by Alan Titchmarsh
|The Haunting by Alan Titchmarsh|
|Genre: Women's Fiction|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: Alan Titchmarsh's trademark romantic fiction delivers a story set in the nineteenth and twenty-first centuries. There are a couple of twists you might not see coming and it's an engaging read. Alan Titchmarsh was kind enough to drop into Bookbag Towers and chat to us.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 352||Date: September 2011|
|Publisher: Hodder and Stoughton|
|External links: Author's website|
We don't know whether or not Harry Flint was a good history teacher – but we do know that he's disenchanted with the job and determined to make a change. His marriage to a lawyer only lasted a few months and Harry feels – rightly or wrongly – that he needs a complete change. He buys a ramshackle cottage, determined to spend some time restoring it as well as investigating his family history and the lives of the saints. Honestly – I know what you're thinking – he is rather more fun than all that sounds. Well, he is - some of the time.
Just about a couple of centuries before all this a drama was played out along the banks of the Itchen. Anne Flint, scullery maid, wanted to better herself by becoming a lady's maid and ran away with the daughter of the big house, who was eloping with someone she shouldn't even have known. It was a foolhardy undertaking and only one of the girls would survive, but what happened by this same stream which runs past Harry's new home would shape his family history over the centuries to come.
It's a deceptively deep story, this one, with a glancing look at the effect of Alzheimer's on family life and the morality of assisted suicide. But don't worry that you're going to be taking your pleasures too sadly in reading it. It's Alan Titchmarsh's trademark romantic fiction only this time it's got a couple of historical twists which you might not see coming. I wish I could work out where he gets his time from – whenever I turn the television on he seems to be smiling at me, but there's been some time spent on effective research in the writing of this novel and there's a real sense of what it was like to live in the nineteenth century.
I was going to say that the writing is good – but what I really mean is that the writing is Alan. Sometimes I smiled as I could hear him speaking rather than the character, but I wasn't reading the book because I was expecting the work of a literary giant. I was looking for a fun, enjoyable and engrossing read and that's exactly what I got. I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.
If you're a Titchmarsh fan then you'll undoubtedly enjoy When I Was A Nipper with its tales of his childhood.
Alan Titchmarsh was kind enough to be interviewed by Bookbag.
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